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 Re: Leblanc altos
Author: NOLA Ken 
Date:   2022-06-20 20:36

(his is a two decades old thread, originally about Leblanc alto clarinets which are pretty clearly problematic.)

I've ordered some Bari synthetic reeds to try on mine, although I don't see much love for them on this bulletin board. I used a 1.5 Fibracell alto sax reed on a Fobes San Francisco mpc for my own enjoyment at home because it has a more sax-like sound and great projection. It also worked very well when I was filling in on a low bassoon part in community band. But crossing the break is a bit challenging with that setup. I've recently discoverd that the 1.5 Legere American Cut alto sax reed on a Vandoren B44 mpc and a Fran├žois Louis Pure Brass ligature produces a very nice clarinet sound for me and smooths crossing the break quite a bit on the Leblanc alto. It doesn't have quite the projection of the Fibracell/Fobes setup in the bottom range, but it's a useful tradeoff for some pieces. I did discover, however, that I had to to replace the swan neck with one of Jared De Leon's tunable wood composite traditional-style necks because the Vandoren mpc plays significantly sharp compared to the Fobes. I would say that the lack of a tunable neck on the Leblanc swan neck alto is one of its major drawbacks and maybe a source of their mouthpiece finickyness.

Mark Wolbers of the U of Alaska did a paper in 2011 on alto clarinets as an endangered species in which he describes among other things the rehabilitation of a Leblanc alto, its strong points, and the construction of a tunable metal neck for it. It can be accessed at:


I'd love to try a Noblet alto sometime. They do sound easier to work with than the Leblancs. but I've promised myself to not buy any more instruments. (At least not for awhile -chuckle.)

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 Topics Author  Date
 Leblanc altos  new
C. Hogue 2001-07-31 20:27 
 RE: Leblanc altos  new
C. Hogue 2001-07-31 20:29 
 RE: Leblanc altos  new
David Spiegelthal 2001-07-31 20:36 
 RE: Leblanc altos  new
Robert Small 2001-07-31 20:53 
 RE: Leblanc altos  new
super20dan 2022-06-04 06:08 
 RE: Leblanc altos  new
Robert Small 2001-07-31 21:01 
 RE: Leblanc altos  new
David Pegel 2001-08-01 00:57 
 RE: Leblanc altos  new
Robert Small 2001-08-01 01:41 
 RE: Leblanc altos  new
David Spiegelthal 2001-08-01 15:31 
 RE: Leblanc altos  new
Robert Small 2001-08-01 17:38 
 RE: Leblanc altos  new
Robert 2001-08-09 03:49 
 Re: Leblanc altos  new
Ursa 2022-06-04 21:45 
 Re: Leblanc altos  new
super20dan 2022-06-05 02:42 
 Re: Leblanc altos  new
NOLA Ken 2022-06-05 17:56 
 Re: Leblanc altos  new
super20dan 2022-06-06 03:45 
 Re: Leblanc altos  new
NOLA Ken 2022-06-20 20:36 
 Re: Leblanc altos  new
super20dan 2022-06-20 22:06 

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